Francois As An African American Last Name

The 2010 U.S. Census recorded 11,388 black Americans with Francois as their last name. That represented 78% of the total of 14,593 entries.

This article tracks their numbers in the census since the Civil War. We also look at historic African American people named Francois.

We end with a review of early records of black military service in the United States.

Francois is historically a French name. The related name of Francis is much more common.

After The Civil War

The 1870 census was the first survey after the Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation. In 1850 and 1860, only free African Americans were recorded in the census. The many enslaved were omitted.

From 1870 onward, all black Americans were included.

387 people named Francois were recorded in the 1870 census as black and 101 as mixed.

There was a total of 705 people with the name.

Francois In The 1900 And 1940 Census

The mixed category was dropped from the census in 1900, so we just need to look at the black numbers this time.

The 1900 census recorded 616 people with the last name Francois as black within a total of 1,112 that year.

By the way, the mixed category returned in the 1910 and 1920 censuses. It was dropped again in 1930, but replaced with extra categories for colored and non-white in a way that seems confusing now.

This changed again in 1940 and we can simply focus on one black category.

The 1940 census recorded 473 people named Francois as black within a total of 1,334.

Francois In Black Military Records

Military records are a rich resource of information for family history research. Some of the earliest for African Americans date back to the Civil War.

President Lincoln authorized the use of “colored troops” in combat in the Union Army in 1863, although some black units had fought before then.

The records show that Joseph Francois was a Private in Company D Company in the 6th Louisiana Infantry. He was aged 46 in a military record of July 1863.